Tales From The Drop Box Episode 54 is in my less than biased opinion a blast of fresh punk rawk air to engage your mind and soul as a new age of dissent and rebellion begins in America. If the past is any predictor of the future, punk rock will become more relevant in the social discussion just as it has every single time a government exists to divide the people.
If you are a fan of the genre, I think you’ll find these 15 tracks engaging and diverse. If you are not yet a fan, this episode should open a few doors to the state of the nation – the punk rock nation. As is oft observed, it is difficult to do something new and interesting in this genre, but this episode’s selections should make it obvious that the punk rock game has changed a bit from 1976-77. Not only is the musicianship of these bands obvious, but the diversity in their approaches is readily apparent. Sure, they draw on obvious past influences, but they breathe new life into the genre. The scene is now… perhaps this episode will change your life…. punk rock certainly changed mine.
As for this week’s social issue, I am not sure that a comprehensive analysis is really necessary to measure the level of hate directed at immigrants worldwide let alone measure the rising level of vitriol towards persons some individuals perceive as different in our own country. It is not just a racial divide that is increasing the hostility between various groups of individuals. There is clearly a widening and misplaced perception that our world is composed of persons that fall into two broad categories: “us” and “them.” Consequently our societal relationships are frequently measured on a completely subjective, stereotypically irrelevant basis. Thus, the prevailing viewpoint is expressed as the lowest common denominator – race and religion. Thus, in a Trump America white is good and Muslim is evil. This position is morally reprehensible and indefensible. The “new” race/religion paradigm is “good” vs “evil” with the primary focus directed to hating immigrants. That is, the election of Trump has freed the hatemongers to focus on what makes “us” different from “them” as compared to focusing on what actions are right and what actions are wrong. There is no longer the belief (aspiration?) that we are all in this world together. As a nation we have not focused on the problem namely eradicating a select group of maliciously evil assholes intent on destroying our way of life but rather apparently opted for blaming people who look or practice religions different from our own as being somehow responsible for all of the evil in this world and for our own individual lack of success.
Why highlight this issue now? As this week’s Berlin attack, like this past summer’s attack in Nice, France, certainly highlights, the “immigrant” issue in Europe, like America, is a time bomb waiting to explode. As more of these tragedies impact the daily lives of people in major cities both at home and abroad, hate speech directed at immigrants will increase beyond what Trump is advocating. See Donald Trump and the Rise of Anti-Muslim Violence. Research suggests that politically motivated rhetoric can influence the level of hate motivated crimes. (See Levin, Brian (2016) Special Status Report – Hate Crimes in the United States). As the level of hate filled rhetoric increases in both volume and severity, it is now more important than ever to educate and inform those who are susceptible to such hate speech that violence is not the answer and blaming immigrants for societal problems will not result in a better world for us all or a better condition for each of us individually. It is not just Trump as the proponent of this lunacy. The power of hate rhetoric is more pronounced in families where children are susceptible to the biases and perceptions of their parents. Our focus as a nation should be on preventing the very environment that has bred the current terrorists we are all so concerned about.
Perhaps my perception of the current state of hate is a little trite but we, i.e. you and I, need to resist the temptation to blame immigrants as a source of terror. Resist hate. Be tolerant. Teach tolerance.
Here is what you’ll find in Episode #54:
- Petrol Girls – “Rewild” (Talk of Violence)
- The Cavemen – “Satan Is Her Name” (Born To Hate)
- Bloodsucking Zombies From Outerspace – “Welcome To The Jungle” (Bloody Unholy Christmas)
- The Suburban Homes – “Welcome to Shitsville” (…Are Bored EP)
- Bright Lights – “Hide Out” (When Stories Become Places)
- The Gashers – “Roadside War” (In Trust We Bleed)
- Contact High – A.C.K.” (Lessons From Defeat)
- The Superweaks – “Junkies Is Gone” (Better Heavens)
- Pretty Hurts “Beat on You” (Pretty Hurts)
- Dayglo Abortions – “The Dishwasher” (Armageddon Survival Guide)
- Sham 69 – “Goodbye Billy Blue” (It’ll End In Tears)
- The Cryptics – “All Lawsuit, All The Time” (Make Me Digital)
- Crown Court – “22” (Capital Offence)
- Calcinator – “Electrife” (Various Artists – Punk 45: Les Punks The French Connection: The First Wave of Punk 1977-1980)
- Maid of Ace – “Monster” (Maid In England)
She is evil she’s insane Satan is her name … if you want it you’re gonna bleed but it’s the price you pay and you’re a very sexy girl very hard to please you can taste the bright lights but you won’t get there for free